Communities celebrate their participatory budgeting

Musselburgh Area Partnership & Crieff Community Trust have both successfully completed their first ever digital PB process with voting events completing on Saturday 16th March. Musselburgh, in East Lothian, and Crieff, in Perthshire, both received Community Choices funding from the Scottish Government and chose to involve citizens the power to make decisions about how budget […]

Participatory Budgeting podcast: balancing online and offline voting in Antwerp

As part of our work developing the use of digital participatory budgeting (PB) in Scotland, Demsoc is shining a light on some of the innovative ways other people across the world use digital PB. We recently shared a blog post about digital PB in New York City. This time we’re doing things a little differently […]

A note about Peterloo

A little intro Tonight we’re holding a special screening of Mike Leigh’s Peterloo at Cameo in Edinburgh. It’s nearly 200 years since a peaceful pro-democracy rally at St Peter’s Fields in Manchester turned into a bloody massacre, but the events that led up to this atrocity still have significance today. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/demsoc-film-screening-peterloo-tickets-52349684315 I’ll be reflecting a […]

How councils & community organisations in Scotland can use digital participatory budgeting

The Democratic Society is helping councils and communities in Scotland to hold participatory budgeting processes online. What is participatory budgeting?  Try the 60-second guide at PB Scotland Our work is part of a national programme to help more people take part in decisions about how public money is spent in their communities.  The support we […]

Event Alert: Democracy in action? – The Place of Referendums in Scotland and the UK

The referendum is, in theory, one of the best democratic instruments around.  One person, one vote. Direct Democracy in action. Look at Switzerland! However, when we look at referendums in more detail, we can be exposed to a very different picture. Are referendums being used within a democratic culture that generates positive democratic outcomes? Alistair […]

Digital democracy: don’t engage for engagement’s sake

Last month NESTA published a paper called Digital Democracy: The tools for transforming political engagement. It’s a comprehensive and well written piece of work and we are glad we had the opportunity to contribute to it. Members of our team in Scotland have been delivering support, guidance and learning about digital engagement to governments for […]

My first two months- a diary of Demsoc’s new Digital Engagement Officer

Hello, I’m Leah and I joined the Democratic Society’s Scottish team in early January as a Digital Engagement Officer to work on a digital integration project with a focus on participatory budgeting (PB). A main purpose of the role is to help local government and community groups think about how they can expand reach and […]

Vacancy – Digital Democratic Engagement Officer

The Democratic Society is recruiting a Digital Democratic Engagement Officer to support our Participatory Budgeting work in Scotland. This is initially a six month contract based at our office in Edinburgh, Scotland. Full information, including the application process, is outlined in the job description below. The deadline for applications is 10am on Monday 14th November 2016. All applicants will be contacted within […]

Turning the tide on democracy?

By Millicent Scott This October, the Athens Democracy Forum will bring together actors from across the world to examine the current threats to democracy from the refugee crisis subsuming Europe, Africa and the Middle East and the rise of terrorist attacks which challenge the core ideals of democracy, to the rise of populism and the […]